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May-06-2010 20:51printcomments

Lawrence Taylor, Dwight Gooden, Darrel Strawberry, Mike Tyson

These guys are well known because they are the name in lights,
But, how many more are the unknown walking streets at night?

Lawrence Taylor, Dwight Gooden, Darrel Strawberry, Mike Tyson.
Heroes and Villains: Listed clockwise from top left: Lawrence Taylor, Dwight Gooden, Darrel Strawberry, Mike Tyson.

(LOS ANGELES) - What makes people who have it all, risk throwing it all away? It is a sad fact in America that many top paid athletes put it all on the line; they are the same people our children often idolize, it can be a dilemma.

Special thanks to thesmokinggun.com, for some of the interesting facts about these men who sometimes alternate between the two classic roles of hero and villain.

Ex-football star Lawrence Taylor is in the news today after being arrested for the alleged statutory rape of a 16-year-old female runaway.

Police say the 51-year old former New York Giants star paid a 16-year old girl $300 for sex in a suite at a Holiday Inn in Rockland County, New York. Taylor, who was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 1999, faces up to four years in prison if convicted of the felony charge.

The infamous Mike Tyson, in this image from November 2007, he just reported to a Maricopa County lockup to serve a day in jail.

The former boxing champ had entered a guilty plea to felony cocaine possession and misdemeanor drunk driving. In addition to a brief jail stay, Tyson also was sentenced to 360 hours of community service, and directed to undergo drug testing. He has numerous prior arrests, all have made headlines.

Former baseball All-Star Darryl Strawberry was arrested by Tampa police in April 1999 on charges of possession of cocaine and soliciting a prostitute.

Since this began, he has been rearrested and jailed several times for violating probation terms. Strawberry is in a cycle that many find themselves in after violating national drug laws. Courts often use these circumstances to fine offenders while also restricting their ability to earn a living.

Dwight Gooden pitched for the Met and Yankee. On the field he was the man of the hour, but he was busted by Florida cops in August 2005 and charged with a felony after he reportedly fled from police during a DUI stop.

Turning himself in after three days, the troubled ballplayer was also arrested for misdemeanor DUI and resisting arrest charges. Even though he turned himself in, he was held without bail.

_____________________________________________

Lawrence Taylor, Dwight Gooden, Darrel Strawberry, Mike Tyson

Yes, three of the greatest New York athletes ever to be alive,
Sadly, after baseball and football are struggling to survive,
What could have demolished stars that once shined so high?
Only alcohol and drugs make you walk and no longer fly.

An American society problem still quietly kept under wraps,
More often than not the sentence is a, “bad boy” wrist slap,
But, until punishment lasts longer & goes deeper then that,
The system and news media will echo, “Look who is back.”

Even Tyson, the most feared heavyweight in his heyday,
Iron Mike still has problems keeping the demons far away,
Look at all the money they made, why feel sorry you say,
Well, it’s so powerful, how do we keep the problem at bay?

Professionals who’ve trained their bodies for maximum use,
Yet they have life and death struggles with substance abuse,
Role models, our children don the jerseys, wear their shoes,
Oh, and will sometimes buy more apparel despite bad news.

I’m not judging it just points out something needs to be done,
What chance does the “Average Joe” have if it knocks out #1?
Okay, intervention, counseling, treatment, this is after the fact,
Biggest question should be how did we get off the right track?

I enjoyed watching these 4 hone their skills, practice their craft,
To see the face of fear on Mikes early opponents made me laugh,
Taylor too, guys would purposely drop a pass, run out of bounds,
Darryl’s bat and glove as Doc performed surgery on the mound.

These two perennial all stars were once the talk of all of baseball,
I’d call you a liar if you said they’d never be inducted in the hall,
LT‘s son was all smiles on the day his famous dad was enshrined,
While speaking of Tyson, biting an ear is all that comes to mind.

These guys are well known because they are the name in lights,
But, how many more are the unknown walking streets at night?
What happens when your addiction calls and you have no cash?
This, prostitution, armed robbery, theft or burglary will get it fast.

Um, the best place to get it started aside from home are schools,
Don’t just teach the kids, “3-R’s” teach them respect and rules,
What is the most profitable fastest growing construction? Well?
Houses, condos, schools, museums, churches? No! Prison cells.

by Luke Easter

=============================================

Luke Easter is a poet who writes about things that are very close to the heart of Salem-News.com. Another former U.S. Marine, Luke heals the world with an approach that reaches people on a different level, one known for centuries, yet too often forgotten in the one we live in.

We live in a world of social & economic injustice. The main reason for founding America in the first place was to relieve the oppression of the King of England. Patrick Henry said it best, “give me liberty or give me death.” And yet, all too often death seems to be the only way out. Why is there such a high suicide rate especially among teens, in the land of the free & the home of the brave? What makes headlines? Good news? Ha! More depressing stories than anything else. I feel poetry takes an edge off the hurt of bad news while still delivering it but in a, “glitzy” sort of way. Giving a different perspective. Kind of like slap in the face as opposed to a knife in the back. At least with the slap you’ll live to see another day and you will know whom it’s from. I wasn’t here for the beginning of the world but at 59, I just might be here for the end.

Even though it’s still a knife, rhyme poetry helps to dull the blade. And that’s my job. You can write to Luke Easter at: lyricsfromlucas@aol.com




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